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Once you are 65 years old, a lot changes with your status! It’s time to enroll in Medicare Part A and B, plan for your full Social Security benefits and consider long-term insurance. At least you can take advantage of some of those senior discounts at your favorite stores and restaurants! Another thing you may be considering is seeing a geriatrician, or a doctor that specializes in geriatric care.

Not everyone over the age of 65 needs to see a geriatric physician. However, some older adults may benefit from making this switch so that they receive the specialized care they need to be healthy, happy and confident. To make this decision for yourself, let’s discuss what a geriatrician does and the benefits to expect.

What Does a Geriatric Doctor Do?

Geriatricians are knowledgeable in treating aging adults. They focus on:

  • Aging process
  • Metabolism
  • Incontinence
  • Slips and falls
  • Memory problems
  • Dementia
  • Depression
  • Osteoporosis
  • Side effects from medications
  • Physical and emotional health

What are the Advantages?

Growing older isn’t always easy, though having the right physician can make the process smoother. A doctor who specializes in elderly care understands the physical, mental and emotional changes that happen in later life. Issues such as memory loss, incontinence and depression will be well understood.

Geriatric doctors are often comfortable discussing other issues that affect older adults such as living wills and goals of care. If you’re not sure which living environment is best – assisted living or in-home care, a geriatric doctor can make recommendations based on your physical and emotional health and wellbeing.

Should I See a Geriatrician?

Seeing a geriatric specialist is completely up to you! Geriatricians generally provide care for seniors who have a number of conditions or disabilities, though not always. If you have complications with your health, working with a more specialized doctor may be best. If you are otherwise healthy and happy with your physician, there is no reason to change.

The most important thing is not the type of doctor that you choose but who you choose. Good doctors can be hard to find. If you have a doctor who listens and takes your concerns seriously, you can continue to work with him or her for as long as you feel comfortable. Being in good hands is what matters.